Why do the smallest things evoke such strong emotions? Think about the last time you bumped into someone you didn’t want to in the street or your partner did someone small that evoked such a strong emotional response, was it justified? Why did you lose your temper or why did it affect you in such a profound way?
Negative emotions are a part of everyone’s lives. Even if you try to distance yourself from them, you’ll still get small negative emotions throughout the day. But why? Why can the smallest things evoke such a striking emotional response?
Emotions such as anger, frustration and rage are demonised by society. We are told to ‘keep calm and carry on’, to calm down or stop being so angry. Even when you feel angry or upset you have to bottle it up. For example, your boss gives you extra work to do, you are desperate for payday and your parents are coming to stay for the weekend. You are under all this pressure but what is your outlet, where do you vent, how do you show your worry?
Instead, you keep calm and carry on, and on, and on, until your partner leaves the toilet seat up.
You explode shouting and screaming
‘how many times have I told you!’
At this moment you feel completely justified in your anger, how many times have you told him to put the toilet seat down and yet he still doesn’t do it!
That response is not just about the toilet seat, it’s a culmination of everything going on in your life. You are responding to your boss, lack of money and the pressure of your parents coming to stay.
Why do you explode at your partner rather than your boss or your parents? It’s safe to show your anger with him as there is less chance of consequences. If you shout at your boss, you will be fired, you know it’s your fault for spending too much money this month and you just wouldn’t dare shout at your parents.
The only way to release the pressure is to shout at the safest person in your life. This is why domestic violence is rife within families. You can’t beat up our boss, the bank or your parents so you lash out on husbands, wives, children as there is no perceived direct consequence.
Release that Tension
If you keep it bottled up you release those emotions in a forceful, unjust and uncontrolled way.
How do you release that tension so that it doesn’t pervade your life and cause upset to your families, friends and even yourself? If you keep it hidden or bottle it up it can be self -damaging, this can be some of the typical reasons for eating too much, drinking too much or taking drugs.
First of all, know what you are stressed about. What is it that is bringing tension into your life? Think about all the things that you feel you need to change, know them and understand them.
Secondly, it might be time to start talking to those around you calmly, about the fact that you are unhappy, maybe tell your boss that you have too much work on, your parents that now is not the best time to visit and your partner that you are stressed out at the moment and you need some help around the house.
Thirdly, you need to find a way to release the tension in a safe and controlled way.
Think to yourself how would you like to use this energy? Some people like to paint, exercise or write. That’s good for them but it might not be helpful for you. Think about what you enjoy and what you want to do. Walk, read, listen to music, anything that allows you to enjoy yourself and release the tension.
You will always have tension in your life one way or another. By learning to understand the pressure and emotions associated with that tension you will gain a greater understanding and more control over your life.